Writer: Elliot Adway

USA Today

A few months ago, we all witnessed the one man show of Russell Westbrook come to an end against the Houston Rockets. There are only a couple people in the world that honestly thought Oklahoma City could return to their mere dynamic form before Kevin Durant skipped town for the Bay: Westbrook himself, and Sam Presti. As we all know, Presti had arguably the best off-season as an executive in recent memory. Adding Paul George alone would’ve won him the off-season. Flipping Victor Oladipo and Domantas Sabonis for the All-Star forward is a no brainer, no matter what free agency questions loom. Then, the unthinkable once again happened. Carmelo Anthony was a lock all summer to be a Houston Rocket in theory, but trade talks stalled. The ultimate opportunist Sam Presti then sent Enes Kanter, Doug McDermott, and a second-round draft pick to the New York Knicks for the future Hall of Famer. To put the cherry on top, Russell Westbrook channeled his inner Baker Mayfield and planted his flag of loyalty into the city of Oklahoma City and resigned for the highest contract in the NBA history. Now that the deck is reshuffled, the Thunder look like legitimate contenders. Billy Donovan already announced that Carmelo Anthony will be starting at the power forward position, meaning a lineup of Westbrook-Roberson-George-Anthony-Adams. The scariest thing about that line up is they’re all players that not only complement the franchise player, but complement each other. Steven Adams was asked to do too much last year, now him being around three All-Star players will help him settle into a more familiar role. Andre Roberson will continue to play stellar defense, but the changes could come on the position he’s tasked to guard. Look for Roberson to start guarding more point guards so he can disrupt them with his length. All in all, the Thunder look prepared to throw their best shot at the Golden State Warriors, and that’s all Russell Westbrook wants.

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